Reading level: Ages 18 and up
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Mass Market Paperback: 405 pages
Publisher: Penguin Group
Release date: June 1st, 2010
Series: Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter #19
Source: Personal Shelf
Reviewed by: Stéphanie
Anita Blake is back in St. Louis and trying to live a normal life-as normal as possible for someone who is a legal vampire executioner and a U. S. Marshal. There are lovers, friends and their children, school programs to attend. In the midst of all the ordinary happiness a vampire from Anita's past reaches out. She was supposed to be dead, killed in an explosion, but the Mother of All Darkness is the first vampire, their dark creator. It's hard to kill a god. This dark goddess has reached out to her here-in St. Louis, home of everyone Anita loves most. The Mother of All Darkness has decided she has to act now or never, to control Anita, and all the vampires in America.
The Mother of All Darkness believes that the triumvirate created by master vampire Jean-Claude with Anita and the werewolf Richard Zeeman has enough power for her to regain a body and to immigrate to the New World. But the body she wants to possess is already taken. Anita is about to learn a whole new meaning to sharing her body, one that has nothing to do with the bedroom. And if the Mother of All Darkness can't succeed in taking over Anita's body for herself, she means to see that no one else has the use of it, ever again. Even Belle Morte, not always a friend to Anita, has sent word: "Run if you can..."
The last time I read a book from this series was in February 2010. I didn’t realize it was that long ago! I actually had to double check my goodreads account to confirm it. Also, I didn’t realize that I had fallen a couple of books behind. So, I decided to catch up for the the release of Kiss the Dead, book 21 of the series, which will be published June 5th, 2012.
I think the main reason I’ve fallen behind is because the series went from “Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter” to “Anita Blake and her Multiple Vampire and Shapeshifter Lovers” (my new name for the series), around book 10 or 11. I loved reading about Anita’s hunts and fights but everything turned overly sexual when Anita started sleeping with more than one guy. Don’t get me wrong, she’s allowed to love more than one guy and be confused over who’s right for her, but now that she’s sleeping with so many people that I can’t even count them all, it’s feels like it’s getting repetitive.
I have to hand it to Laurell—she does know how to write a good love scene. Her attention to detail is perfect and the emotions she gives her characters brings them to life. Every character has his or her little quirks that makes them realistic and memorable. Her writing in general has you coming back for more. There’s a reason why she’s about to publish her 21st book in the series. Readers love her Anita Blake series.
In this installment, there are lots of metaphysical things happening, including fights with The Mother of All Darkness. The dark and powerful vampire, whom everyone believed dead, is back and her spirit has taken possession of the members of the vampire council, some of the most powerful vampires in existence. But that doesn’t seem to be enough power for The Mother, so she now has set her sights on Anita and her powerful group of paranormal allies.
“How? How do you fight something with no body of it’s own? How do you fight something that can jump from body to body?” That’s the question everyone wants answered. They all thought The Mother of All Darkness had been defeated, so now they have to find another way to get rid of her spirit for good.
Jean-Claude (the vampire from one of Anita’s Triumvirate of power and one of her main lovers) has decided that gaining more power and metaphysical strength is the only way to help them survive The Mother. A search for new allies might be difficult but many believe the weretigers are the answer to this search.
As we meet yet again more supernatural characters, we also see Richard, one of the original character, come back in all his werewolf glory. Despite his many issues about being a werewolf, he is still one of my favorite characters. He only has a minor role in this book but the werewolf lover in me is glad that he’s back.
Fans of the series will be satisfied with this book but will be left wanting more. For those who have given up on the series because of all the sex, I completely understand. However, those of you who enjoy it and haven’t gotten this far, I urge you to keep reading. This book is a great addition to the series, and I think, with this ending, only greater things are about to unfold.